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Michelle Duggar Believes in Hands-On Learning

By shanaaborn |

The Duggars believe in helping their kids learn life skills.

When was the last time your kids helped clear a lot for a construction project? Or talked to a professional camera crew about their equipment and how to set up a shot? Have they gotten training in first-responder techniques so they can work as volunteer firefighters or ambulance drivers?

No? Then you might be interested to learn that the Duggar children do things like this every day.

Mom Michelle writes in her TLC blog this week about the many opportunities her large family has had to learn job skills first-hand. “I just tell my kids to gain as many life skills as they can as they go along,” she says. “Talk to professionals, people who know their field, and learn as much as you can.

“You’ll never regret gaining that knowledge and understanding — whether you’re going to do that for a living may not be the goal,” she continues. “It’s about gaining as much knowledge as you can.”

Of course, they have the advantage of fame -  19 Kids & Counting has opened a lot of doors – but the show gives them other opportunities as well. The children think of the film crew as family, and by asking questions about their jobs and equipment, Michelle says they’re getting ideas about whether a career in photography or videography might suit them.

She also relates an anecdote about two of her sons, who helped work on a construction project and discovered where their hearts do (or don’t) lie.“Our son Josiah was covered in poison ivy and and he was like, ‘I don’t think I want to be digging around in the poison-ivy patch anymore. That’s not my niche in life,’ whereas our other son John-David (who doesn’t get poison ivy) said, ‘Man, I like this. This is my kind of job!’ ”

Josiah, now 15, is learning accounting, “and he’ll probably enjoy it because his personality is more lent to that,” Michelle says.

When was the last time you heard of a teenager wanting to be an accountant?

But in the Duggars’ view, the sooner you find your life’s calling and get started on it, the better. Once their elementary homeschooling is over, the older children have the option of taking a fast-track route to a college degree, going to work or a combination of both.  There’s not much likelihood that a young Duggar will take a self-discovery backpacking trip through Europe or spend nights reading his work at a poetry slam.

Yes, the 19 Duggars get a lot of fascinating opportunities, thanks to their parents’ encouragement to seek out apprenticeships and learn from experience. And while the family’s methods and beliefs are sometimes controversial, you can’t fault their work ethic.

[Photos: via]

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About shanaaborn



Shana Aborn is a writer and editor specializing in women's lifestyle issues. Formerly on staff at Ladies' Home Journal and MAMM, she is currently the managing editor of Life & Beauty Weekly. Read bio and latest posts → Read shanaaborn's latest posts →

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